*Five years ago, I was given the title “Ideas for a Research Science Project” for publication on eHow. The article was originally published on March 18, 2010. It is no longer published on eHow or anywhere else so I am free to publish it here.
Every year, high school and college instructors assign research science projects, and students struggle to choose the best topics. Some projects are detailed and elaborate while other projects are simple, yet informative. When picking a research science project, choose one that produces results coveted by consumers.
Food and Spoilage
Different companies claim their food storage containers keep foods fresher longer. Compare different types of food storage containers to determine which containers actually work best. Obtain various brands of plastic bowls and bags. Test foods in the refrigerator and the freezer using the same amount of fresh food in each bag. For example, when testing different storage bags, each bag should contain the same number of strawberries. After testing strawberries, do the experiment again using blueberries and then bananas. See if the same brand bag works best each time. For thorough results, do the experiment several times using a variety of fruits and vegetables.
Determine the quality and accuracy of advertisements about batteries and light bulbs. Most ads claim that batteries and light bulbs last for a specified duration of time. Obtain several different brands of batteries and bulbs. Place them into similar devices of the same brand to test the quality and true duration times of the batteries and bulbs. Record results and add possible reasons for the outcome. Take the project one step further by obtaining batteries and bulbs of the same brand and placing them into different devices of differing brands. Research whether certain brands of devices drain more energy from the batteries and bulbs.
Obtain several types of magnets and metal objects in various sizes and shapes. Record the force of the magnets at room temperature, then take the magnets into a colder environment. Determine if the magnets lose or gain force when the atmosphere becomes colder. Take the magnets into a warm room and determine the affects of warmer temperatures on the force of magnets. Place some of the magnets in a freezer for an hour while you warm other magnets under a heated light bulb. Determine if magnets lose or gain force in environments of extreme temperatures.
Research the best natural insulators to keep foods warm or cold. Obtain three pans of the same size, three potatoes of the same size and three cardboard boxes of the same size. Line the boxes with three different natural potential insulators such as straw, cloth materials, sand or newspapers. Place one potato in each pan. Boil the potatoes for three minutes. Remove the potatoes and place them into the cardboard boxes at the same time. Quickly place the lids on the boxes. Wait 20 minutes before removing the lids. Insert a thermometer into the potatoes and record the temperatures. Determine the best insulator and consider any factors that might effect the results.